Kochi-Muziris Biennale

Kochi-Muziris Biennale

Special Feature by UiU:


Kochi-Muziris Biennale is an international festival of contemporary art hosted in the city of Kochi, Kerala. It is India’s largest contemporary art event, and the largest public exhibition of its kind in South Asia. The landmark event has created an enduring platform for artistic and cultural contributions, establishing itself as a centre for artistic engagement. The three editions of the Kochi-Muziris Biennale, since 2012, have ensured that Kochi now occupies a prominent position on the global art calendar.

In its title, “Kochi-Muziris” seeks to invoke the latent cosmopolitan spirit of the contemporary metropolis of Kochi and its mythical past- the ancient port of Muziris, a centre of trade and cultural exchange. In spirit, the Biennale seeks to explore resonances of this past alongside the pluralities of its present, in the current global context, to posit alternatives to dominant political and cultural discourses. In this way, the title is an invitation for dialogue for a new aesthetics and politics- rooted in the Indian experience, but receptive to the winds blowing in from other worlds.

The Biennale has exhibited more than 300 artworks by over 250 artists from all over the world, and hosted more than a million visitors.

Kochi Biennale Foundation

Kochi Biennale Foundation

Kochi Biennale Foundation is a non-profit charitable trust engaged in activities related to education and the proliferation of art in India. Kochi Biennale Foundation works throughout the year to broaden public access to art and critical discourse by conducting education programmes, symposiums, workshops, and creating multi-faceted platforms for discussions on cultural and social development and investment in arts education and infrastructure. As an artist-initiated organization, the Kochi Biennale Foundation was built with the conviction that art should be made accessible to all. The Foundation hopes to be and foster spaces not only for art production, but also for open critical engagement, and, overall, to strengthen the region’s contemporary art infrastructure.

Kochi Biennale Foundation is committed to organising a diverse range of programmes for a wide and hybrid range of audiences, especially during the time of the Kochi-Muziris Biennale. The KMB also sees the active engagement of large parts of the local population of Kochi, as either working- in transportation, accommodation, preparation, maintenance, guiding, etc.- and, equally, as visitors to the venues and participants in the discourse produced around the event. In this way, over the years and editions, the Biennale has become a significant part of the social fabric of Kochi, an integral element of the Foundation’s spirit and mission. For art practitioners, local and international alike, the Biennale provides a world-class platform, outside of the commercial art space, to exhibit alongside makers with starkly different backgrounds and careers, with the city of Kochi, its multifaceted history and spirit of exchange, as the common site of response and display.

Kochi-Muziris Biennale, along with the wide array of Foundation programmes, actualize these beliefs, substantively addressing the need for public dissemination and discussion of art.

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(From press information.
© Photos: Courtesy of Kochi Biennale Foundation)

Biennale Pavilion


Contact:
Kochi Biennale Foundation
1/1903, Kunnumpuram
Fort Kochi PO
Kerala 682001
India
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